CHICAGO (CBS) – Three people were taken into custody after a Near North convenience store owner was shot to death, and one person remains behind bars Wednesday night. CBS 2’s Suzanne Le Mignot reports.
Sources say Bassam “Ollie” Naoum was shot three times: in the back, right elbow and above his right thigh. Sources also say his wounds show Naoum was running away from the gunman inside his Munchies Convenience Store, at 950 N. Orleans St., as the shots were fired.
“You could go to Ollie for everything. Yes, you can. He’ll never turn you down,” said longtime friend Shandra Hale.
Naoum was affectionately known as “Ollie” in the neighborhood. His convenience store has been in the community for more than 15 years.
“If people didn’t have money, he gave them. You know, he probably went without to make sure others didn’t, and this is how he gets treated?” said well wisher Kelly Martensen while sobbing.
Martensen had just finished placing a vibrant orange Gerber daisy potted plant at the growing memorial outside Naoum’s store.
Sources say after the shooting, three men seen running, were taken into custody. Two have been released. The third man, who had a gun when he was arrested, has been charged with unlawful possession of a handgun.
Sources say the person of interest has an extensive juvenile record, along with arrests as an adult. Tests are being done on the gun he had to see if it was used in Naoum’s murder.
“He’s been my friend for well over 30 years,” said Gazi Mashal. “I miss him deeply. The perpetrator of this heinous crime must be brought to justice.”
Police say robbery doesn’t appear to be a motive. Cash was still in the register and other items of value were still in the store.
Friends say Naoum was known to have thousands of dollars in his pocket at any given time. People also knew where he kept his money.
“In a bag, under the cash register, so they know his habits. He has been open. It’s not behind a closed door,” Mashal said.
Visitation for Bassam “Ollie” Naoum will be held on Thursday, Oct. 21st from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., and funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Friday, Oct. 22nd, at St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church, at 1220 S. 60th Ct. in Cicero.
Flowers can be sent to the church listed above, or in lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Thanksgiving Dinner Fund in honor of Naoum, to Union Missionary Baptist Church, 940 N. Orleans St., Chicago, IL 60610.
Through donations being made to the dinner fund, Naoum will be giving back to the community he cared so deeply for when he was alive. He was known for giving mothers’ milk and diapers for their children free of charge and giving money to anyone in need.
The Naoum family also wants to thank the public for their thoughts, prayers, and the acts of kindness they have received during this very difficult time.